We’re all familiar with Thomas Edison’s modern version of “the lamp” — a source of electric light that works by heating the filament in a glass bulb. (Apparently, a man named Sir Joseph Swan also played a role in all of this, but I don’t remember learning about him in history class. So I’ll let the historians grapple with that one.)
Naturally, lighting design and light sources have evolved over the past 200-plus years. But it is just now, in the 2010’s, that we are starting to see a new wave of high-tech lighting — bright ideas that are shedding new light on how we work and play.
Here are some of the high-tech task lighting features we know you’ll love.
Historically, the purpose of the lamp was to light a space. Now, we see smart features packed into light fixtures that allow lights to be multi-functional. Many high-tech task lamps now have a USB charging port. You can easily plug in your phone or tablet for charging without awkwardly reaching under your desk or behind a couch to find an outlet. It’s simple, and genius.
The Mosso Pro Lamp even has the option of wireless charging. Simply set your phone on the base of the lamp, and that’s it!
Full Dimmer Switches
In case you haven’t heard, the 3-way switch has become a thing of the past. With LED quickly becoming the preferred light source, more light fixtures have full dimmer switches. I am referring to the ability to choose the exact amount of light emitted by the fixture. Many of these lights have a simple touch switch that allows for easy light level customization.
For the Equo Desk Light, the full dimmer touch switch is conveniently located on the stem of the lamp.
LED: The New Light Source
What is LED? Well, I’m not much of a scientist, so I won’t even attempt to explain it. But I can tell you that it stands for “light emitting diode”. The most important thing to know, however, is that it is 90 percent more efficient than incandescent light bulbs, according to Energy Star, the government-backed symbol for energy efficiency. LED bulbs are also longer lasting and much smaller than other bulb types, which opens up a new world of possibilities for lighting designers. (Check out the super thin Lady7 Task Light below.)
Speaking of LED, many high-tech features are made possible by this new light source, including full-range dimmers. Another great feature, courtesy of LEDs, is the warm-to-cool adjustment; keep reading for details.
Warm-to-Cool Light Adjustment
Have you ever observed how your incandescent bulbs at home give off this nice, yellow-ish glowing light, while the overhead florescent lights at work seem disturbingly purple at times? What you’ve noticed is a difference in light temperature, but it’s easier to think of light temperature in terms of color. Light temperature is the terminology lighting experts use to describe the color emitted by a light source.
You may prefer the warm look of incandescent bulbs when sipping a glass of Merlot and lounging in your living room, but it’s likely you prefer whiter light for reading and writing.
With some new LED light fixtures, you can adjust the light temperature (or the color of the light) with an easy touch switch. So, between a full dimmer switch and your warm-to-cool switch, you can customize the look and brightness of the light that comes from the lamp.
Glare-free Task Lights
Light manufacturers are experimenting with ways to use LED technology to eliminate glare issues. The Horizon Task Light by Humanscale (below) utilizes Thin Film LED Technology, which produces an ultra-wide glare-free footprint that is smooth and even. We also love the Circa Table Lamp, which provides glare-free illumination with its dramatic round shade. The Circa has less adjustments than some task lights, but it might be the perfect solution for your small, stylish work space.
Many high-tech task lights now have built-in occupancy sensors. These discreet smart devices are programmed to turn the light off after you have been away for a certain amount of time. The sensor then turns the light back on when you return. This feature, especially when combined with energy-saving LED technology, may help to reduce your energy consumption (especially if you are a forgetful person).
Super Flexible Designs
They bend and swivel any which way. You can grab any part of the fixture and pull the light to exactly where you need it. Highly flexible task lights adapt to your ever-changing work needs. You’re on the computer, then on the phone, then reading a report. . . . You need a light that can keep up with you. Fortunately, there are more and more super flexible task lights out there. Here is one which is appropriately titled Superlight.
These are a few of the newest trends in high-tech task lighting we know you’ll love! We are excited to see what’s next as lighting and technology continue to evolve.
Shop our selection of Modern Task Lighting.